Record deal for boosted solar panels

Concentrator photovoltaic cell manufacturer to provide $103 million in solar cell systems across Spain.

SolFocus, a maker of concentrator photovoltaic systems, has signed a $103 million (80 euro) deal with Empe Solar, a Spanish group that promotes solar energy use.

SolFocus panels, made of mostly aluminum and glass, are 95 percent recyclable. SolFocus

Concentrator photovoltaic (CPV) systems typically use lenses and mirrors to concentrate light on solar cells to maximize the amount of electricity they can generate.

SolFocus plans to install over 10 megawatts of CPV systems across southern Spain for Empe Solar between now and 2010 as part of the deal.

SolFocus has already completed three utility-scale projects in Spain.

The 10-megawatt installation would collectively generate enough energy to supply a town of 40,000 residents, and eliminate 27,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year if used to replace traditional fossil fuel energy generators.

It's the largest deployment of concentrator photovoltaic solar energy systems in Europe so far, according to a joint statement from SolFocus and Empe Solar.

Sunny Spain is to be the recipient of $103 million worth of CPV systems between now and 2010. SolFocus

"Empe Solar seeks only the most innovative solutions to reduce electricity production costs for our customers. SolFocus has proven its technology's value in our region, and we are confident it will enable us to quickly achieve our cost targets for carbon-free energy," Empe Solar partners Eduardo Goicoechea and Sebastian Sagues said in a joint statement.

The other claim to fame SolFocus makes is that its CPV systems themselves, which primarily consist of aluminum and glass components, are kind to the environment since they are 95 percent recyclable.

But SolFocus is not the only company touting good news Monday for solar technology. Cool Earth Solar announced earlier it's rolling out its solar balloon prototypes over the next two weeks.

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About the author

In a software-driven world, it's easy to forget about the nuts and bolts. Whether it's cars, robots, personal gadgetry or industrial machines, Candace Lombardi examines the moving parts that keep our world rotating. A journalist who divides her time between the United States and the United Kingdom, Lombardi has written about technology for the sites of The New York Times, CNET, USA Today, MSN, ZDNet, Silicon.com, and GameSpot. She is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not a current employee of CNET.

 

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